I actually stumbled upon this place by accident because I was looking for a few cool boutique cinemas to watch a movie on a particular weekend and the electric cinema came up. On the website, the electric diner caught my attention and after looking at the menu, I thought "why not!" . I headed straight to Portobello road after a nice walk from Piccadilly Circus to Westminster (I know...amazing). It was quite a nice day so that put in me a great mood for an awesome meal!
We arrived at the restaurant and the vibes I was getting were quite neutral. It was really relaxed, dully-lit and had a nice bar that extended throughout most of the restaurant space. I was here for the simple American-French brasserie style
wholesome food so that was all I was less affected by the static ambience. Luckily I was with Longs (who has a massive appetite) and I hadn't eaten all day so gastronomic recklessness was inevitable.
We ordered our meals all at once! The grilled salmon came first. This was AMAZING. It was crispy on the outside and tender on the inside; buttery notes came through, hint of acidity from the sauce and a nice finishing with the sweetness from the cherry tomatoes. I was really impressed with this overall. I was just hoping all the other dishes would be on the same par of quality.
Next delivered dish was the honey-fried chicken. This was very well seasoned and had a great kick from the chilli but failed to meet my expectations. I couldn't understand why it was £17, after all, it's just chicken! Ironically, it was pretty much the most expensive thing on the menu.
The arrival of the grilled hot dog and the cheeseburger gave me mixed feelings. On one hand I felt excited but on the other hand, I felt like a glutton but I just convinced myself to go for it and... I did! The hotdog was too rich and needed something sour or sweet to cut through that. The glorious taste of the brioche bun was masked by the meaty juices that soaked the bun and made it soggy. Basically, the hot dog wasn't that great.
I let my stomach 'rest' before I carried on but when I gained my strength, I had a bite of the cheeseburger and it reminded me of a McDonald's Big Mac but I'm not sure that's necessarily a bad thing. The cheese tasted processed and the patties could have been thicker and juicer so I see where the hints of fast-food originate from. Unfortunately, it was another disappointment on the whole.
At this time, I couldn't even consider ordering dessert; the meal was just overwhelmingly rich and I didn't think a dessert would help. I even considered ordering some house-made donuts but I was so annoyed to hear they stopped making them (I was kinda looking forward to that)
Although I really just enjoyed one dish, the overall feel of the meal was quite positive. The food wasn't bad, it just didn't meet my expectations. It came down to £32 pp including drinks and service so I was pleased that I wasn't being exploited for a very standard meal.
The Electric diner is good for a very casual relaxed lunch. However, I can't help but think that Honest Burgers next door would have been a better choice. If I were to come next time, I would go for earlier for the breakfast menu; it looked better than the all day menu.
191 Portobello Road